Gifted Deniz makes the grade in film studies

Published: 10 November 2009 at 13:47

A change from choreography to film making was the right move for exceptional student.

Deniz Johns is one of a group of pioneering Anglia Ruskin students to be celebrating graduating from the Faculty of Arts, Law and Social Sciences with a BA (Hons) in Film Studies.

A mature student from Turkey, Deniz has not only achieved a First Class degree as a result of her study but also won the Communication, Film and Media Studies Prize for ‘Best Overall Student Achievement’ for creative and critical excellence.

The course focuses on the skills currently in demand within the creative industries. Graduates will go on to work in film and video production, film criticism, broadcasting, media consultancy, and possibly journalism and advertising. 

Deniz explains that her route into film making was not clearly defined,

"My interest in film and video began to grow, when I was doing an MA in Choreography in Devon.  Then my passion for film studies eventually took over from my dance work. This is when I found out about the Film Studies programme at Anglia Ruskin.  This programme appealed to me immediately as it covered very wide range of areas of film studies in theory and practice. So I left the MA degree and came to Cambridge to study which was one of the best decisions I've ever made in my life!"

"In these last three years, I have become immersed in so many creative activities that have helped me to grow personally and professionally. I have worked for the Cambridge Film Festival, I co-produced a short film, one of my video works was screened in an international film festival, another one was also screened at Arts Picture House in a special woman filmmaker’s screening.  In addition, I was awarded a grant by Anglia Ruskin University to go and participate in a unique silent film festival in Italy, Le Giornate Del Cinema Muto, I visited Venice Architecture Biennale, I got an artist residency in Germany for two months, where I taught video production course and programmed a film screening event, and most recently my 16mm film was screened at Serpentine Gallery along with many other artist filmmakers."

"The BA Film Studies programme gave me everything I needed academically and in terms of courage, morale and support.  The lecturers were all eager to see me develop my talents to the full and for this I will always be hugely grateful."

"Of course as a mature student, I was well aware what I needed to do in order to get a first class degree which was to work really hard! Not only the last two years but from day one - if you look in a dictionary you will find, the origins of the word 'student' are related to the latin word 'studium', which means 'painstaking application', and that exactly how it has been for me."

As Deniz enjoys being a student so much, she is intending to further her studies to become a lecturer in the subject of film making. Speaking about the prize-winning, top-grade  student, Dr Tina Kendall, Senior Lecturer in Film Studies, said:

"Deniz Johns is without a doubt one of the most gifted, inspired and inspiring film students that we have had the pleasure of teaching on this course. During her time at Anglia Ruskin University, Deniz has enthusiastically embraced every possible opportunity to develop both her critical acumen and her creative practice in the context of film studies. Her dedication was also a clear source of motivation for others, and her presence played a positive role in fostering a real sense of community amongst her peers."